The term Intentional Parenting has become a hot topic in recent years, but many people are not exactly sure of what it means. Intentional Parenting is a method where parents deliberately plan ways to be present in their children’s lives. And not just physically present – but emotionally, communicatively, and educationally too.
While not every moment of our lives can be planned, adapting an Intentional Parenting style helps provide us with ways to bond with our children. Science has shown that when parents deliberately spend time with their children, it assists in future academic achievement, improved relationships, and greater emotional well-being.
To children, love equals attention. With the world today being so distracting and parents being busier than ever, children seem to be missing out on the undivided attention that they need. We can’t give all of our attention, all of the time, to our kids. That would be impractical. However, this is where Intentional Parenting comes into play. It is a way to try and plan your life to fit in moments of attention. Whether it be a 10 minute cuddle in the morning before the rush starts, one-on-one story time in the evening or a walk around the block pointing out interesting things – it is these small moments that are not only doable, but will make all the difference in your relationship with your child.
Another important aspect of Intentional Parenting is making teachable moments instead of letting them come by naturally. Schedule the time to teach your child to water plants, tie shoelaces, pack away toys, tummy time or help in the kitchen. Not only are you teaching them valuable skills, you will also be setting rules for them. When it comes to Intentional Parenting, setting rules and boundaries is not only about discipline but giving your children stable guidelines with which they can grow.
Here are a few ideas on how you can introduce Intentional Parenting to your child’s life simply:
- Join a parenting and child class like Toptots, click here to find a Toptots branch!
- Cuddle and sing songs
- Read a book
- Go for a walk
- Blow bubbles
- Play pretend games
- Water plants
- Play games
- Build with Legos or blocks
- Work on a puzzle
- Fly a kite
- Draw pictures outside with sidewalk chalk
- Throw / kick a ball
- Bake together
Toptots Early Learning SA